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Interviews with Cheese in the Trap’s cast (Part 1)

Given that the Lunar New Year holiday took away our two new episodes of Cheese in the Trap this week (graaaaar!), I suppose it’s only fitting that the cast would at least embark on a massive interview circuit and give us pretty hanbok-clad New Year’s photos. It doesn’t ease the pain of not getting new episodes, but I suppose it’s better than nothing, though I still reserve the right to be mad at tvN for pre-empting the show.

When I say massive interview circuit, I really do mean massive; I’d intended to cull my favorite quotes and bits from all the various interviews and compile them into one post, but the material ballooned out of control pretty quickly. So we’ve got interview bits from some of our main cast in this post, to be followed with more interview bits from our love-to-hate-’em supporting characters in Part 2.

In this post: series lead Park Hae-jin who plays cryptic sunbae Yoo Jung, Seo Kang-joon as hotheaded second lead Baek In-ho, Park Min-ji as bubbly best friend Bora, and Kim Hee-chan as our heroine’s younger brother Joon. (Sadly, lead actress Kim Go-eun didn’t make the interview rounds, though I’ll keep my eyes peeled if/when she does.)

Obviously, the drama wouldn’t be the same without Park Hae-jin in the lead; that has to be the duh statement of the year. His casting was met with universal excitement early on, as he pretty much looked identical to the webtoon character and seemed capable of pulling off the role’s necessary complexity, like combining romantic lead elements in a simultaneously swoony and unnerving performance. And I think we can agree that the response to what he calls “the most difficult character I’ve played” has been overwhelmingly positive.

Simply looking like the original character isn’t enough to make the role complete, of course, and he was very aware of how much more was required; he expressed dismay that there was such a focus on looks by the media and fandom. That’s particularly true in Kim Go-eun’s case, because while Park Hae-jin was welcomed readily, she was not, being met with more skepticism.

Park said, “I felt bad about it. She would do such a good job, but it felt regrettable that all the talk was about looking the part. She didn’t show it but I thought she must have felt upset inside, but there was nothing to be done but to do an even better job on set.”

He had nothing but praise for Kim, and said he predicted that the negative reception would soon turn, which it did. He’d briefly worried that she had no drama experience, since the film world works so differently, but now waves it aside as “needless worrying.” “Her acting is like a veteran who’s filmed multiple dramas. The director said the same thing. She doesn’t force things in making her character, she’s just Hong Seol. When we’re acting together, she’s so good at reacting that she’s a good actor to work with.”

“You’ll know from watching the drama, but Kim Go-eun acts in an extremely natural way. It’s like she wears clothes that are exactly suited for her, and she came out with a lovable and realistic Hong Seol. If the character of Hong Seol had been acted by someone picked just to match the looks perfectly, we wouldn’t have gotten this feeling.”

He also said, “To be honest, I was cast first and I was really curious to know who would be cast as Hong Seol. A lot of people posted their fantasy casting choices and there were people where I thought, ‘Oh, this person really looks the part,’ and others where I thought, ‘Uh, this feels different.’ I’m not saying this just because it turned out this way, but I truly think the current casting was the best.”

Asked what concerned him most when he received the casting offer, Park said, “I’m 10 years older than [Seo] Kang-joon and 11 years older than [Nam] Joo-hyuk. I thought I’d feel a generation gap because of that [laughs] but fortunately, there isn’t. …I worried about what to do [with Seo] if he felt discomfort about me being an older sunbae, because the dynamic depends on confrontation. But I was thankful that we were thrown into it [conflict] right from rehearsals. And it doesn’t work if he then comes up and says he’s sorry. At least while we’re working on the drama, it’s right that we keep up that relationship like it’s real.”

Regarding acting with the boys: “We’ve never talked amongst ourselves about people’s reactions or media articles. We’re ordinary guys [that way]. We don’t talk about every little detail, and we don’t even talk about ratings. It’s not because we’re not friends, but we focus on our characters and talk about that. I have a lot of scenes with In-ho [Seo Kang-joon], and although I don’t have a lot with Eun-taek [Nam Joo-hyuk], it turns out we’re from the same hometown, Yeongdo in Busan.”

As to the question of being a thirtysomething playing a twentysomething college student: “You really can’t do anything about [hiding] age. It’s a concern that it’ll be really obvious to viewers. [Laughs] When the director asked, ‘Should we look for child actors for the high school scenes?’ I answered, ‘We’ll do it ourselves,’ and I’m regretting that now. [Laughs]”

“This isn’t a drama that could be produced well just on acting. The power of the original was both medicine and poison. We could make an homage, but we couldn’t copy directly. I worried over how we would express things differently from the original.”

Perhaps as one example, he explained his take on Jung’s personality: “I approached [the character] from a very basic point. I’d thought of Yoo Jung [before] as calculating and cold and those kinds of things. But then I thought of him from entirely the opposite way and saw him as an innocent person. Like the kind of child who would be playing fine, but if he gets hit, he thinks he has to hit back too.”

So if somebody wrongs him, he strikes back before even calculating how he should get his payback, in “a kind of reflexive action.” Still, “But he really likes Seol, so in front of her he smiles purely.”

Park Hae-jin explained gaining and losing weight for the sake of his characters: He gained weight for weekend drama My Daughter Seo-yeong, then lost weight to play the refined but sweet best friend in You From Another Star. Then he lost lost more to wear suits and look sharp in Doctor Stranger, and slimmed down to play a sociopath in Bad Guys.

Cheese in the Trap allowed him to work in his appearance and weight while mid-filming, because the half-pre-produced schedule gave the show extra time to work with. So he explained looking particularly sharp and slim in Episodes 3 to 5, after which he started to gain a bit of weight, although it doesn’t really become visible until Episode 12.

Fashion-wise: “In Yoo Jung’s case, even if he doesn’t want to stand out, he stands out. He’s wealthy and all his friends praise him, and it felt like it could be tacky if he dressed as though he were the big man on campus. So he wears ordinary clothes, but I try to make it feel different through the materials or sense of color.”

I found this tidbit particularly interesting, as Park Hae-jin explained the difference between broadcast and cable dramas: “If you read the script for an episode of a broadcast drama, there are scenes that have tension and scenes that deflate tension, mixed in together. If every scene is tense, viewers can get fatigued. But cable is the opposite. Every scene has to have suspense. If you give viewers a moment to look at the clock, they can change the channel right away. For me, the standard for an entertaining drama is how many times I looked at the clock while watching it.”

He did admit to not understanding Jung’s thoughts in some instance, and said, “While acting together, I said to Kim Go-eun, ‘If I were a woman, I’d dislike me.’ [Laughs] She thought the same as me.”

I like to think that makes him reasonable and well-adjusted, that he has trouble understanding Jung’s dark, sometimes sideways thinking. I find him a fascinating character who manages to be sympathetic and appealing, but isn’t someone I’d want to necessarily deal with in real life.

As for his co-star Seo Kang-joon, playing wayward ex-friend and ex-pianist In-ho, it’s been a refreshing experience watching him come into his own in this role. I’d wondered whether it was just good directing, or a good character match, or if he’d gotten better as an actor, and I do think it’s a mix of all three. But it’s nice to see him acknowledge that as well, since I like him better for knowing that he was generally seen as lacking as an actor, and that he’d worked to improve that.

He said, “In the beginning the fans were scary. When the casting articles came out and I saw the reaction, I wasn’t confident I could handle it. It was mostly negative reactions like ‘Why is he Baek In-ho?’ and ‘Haven’t you seen his acting in Hwajung?’ I wasn’t confident I could wipe out those reactions. It was a time when I deliberated whether timid and introverted me could portray Baek In-ho. Now, I feel great that viewers are receiving it well.”

“I think I’ve progressed from when I did Hwajung. I don’t know that I’m acting well—I watch other sunbaes’ dramas and [I see that] I’m not quite good at acting. But I’ve improved from Hwajung, and I think people are accepting me well.” (Note on the translation: He’s not saying “I know I suck,” but rather being modest and admitting he’s not awesome.)

I’m getting the sense most people really prefer the format of shooting a drama well in advance, so it’s a good thing for the system that Cheese did this schedule successfully. Seo said, “I really like pre-produced dramas. It’s an environment where, when we’re filming, I can say, ‘I’d like to try one more time.’ Because I can ask the director to try again if I don’t like what I shot, I think this drama can be a project where I’m not left with a lot of disappointment. Even if I’m lacking, I think this drama will be one without many regrets.”

“There is some difficulty in not knowing viewers’ reactions in real time, but it was a positive thing that the pre-production gave us time to spare. More than anything, I liked that there wasn’t the excuse of being short on time, and I could focus and crack the whip on myself.”

Regarding his approach to In-ho: “I didn’t read the webtoon. I tried to pull Baek In-ho’s personality out of myself rather than the drama. Reading the script, I imagined how I would react in this situation, or how I would be if I got angry.”

Furthermore, “Director Lee Yoon-jung told me I had too much will and ambition and to get rid of them. Hearing that made me think a lot. He’s a free-spirited character, so I put aside myself and melted into the character on set, which helped a lot.”

Park Min-ji seems like a relative newcomer, but it’s a little surprising to realize her debut came eleven years ago, and that she was the lead in the teenage-pregnancy movie Jenny, Juno when she was 16. It’s a movie that drew some buzz for its somewhat provocative subject material, and until Cheese in the Trap came along, was the project for which she was best known.

She did already know Kim Go-eun from shooting the 2015 movie Grandmother Gye-choon together, which helped them establish rapport on the drama, and Park described Joo-hyuk as playful and easy to play friends with. Somewhat surprisingly, the drama is home to a lot of ad-libbing and last-minute improvisation, although that does explain how much of it feels so natural.

Park said, “There’s very little that happens as written in the script. It’s like the script is only there for the flow [of the plot]. I think a lot gets changed on set. In particularly, [PD Lee] enjoys scenes where Bora and Eun-taek squabble among themselves. There are a lot of scenes where we come up with things on our own. For instance, in Episode 1 there’s a scene where Seol is late for class. Originally, Bora was supposed to promise a kiss and forget it. But Eun-taek demanded a kiss from Bora directly, and I switched it to Bora knowingly rejecting it by hitting him. Nam Joo-hyuk was really disappointed with that, saying he’d done his best and Eun-taek was sad not to get his reward. [Laughs]”

Everyone has had strong words of praise and loyalty for their director, and Park was no different: “She pays attention to each and every actor. Usually, compared to movies, in dramas the director isn’t able to direct with as much detail or attention. That’s why everyone feels like they’re handling individual battles. But PD Lee Yoon-jung gives detailed directions not only to us but also to brief supporting actors. Every scene has its central character, but she doesn’t only take care of that character, she pays attention to the others too. For instance, she might say something like, ‘In this scene, how about you try an ad-lib with this kind of feeling?’ She gives lots of opportunities.”

“When I read the webtoon, I was surprised that there are a lot of ways Bora and I are alike. Director Lee Yoon-jung’s style is to allow the actor to pour their own selves into their roles and create a color of their own, so I felt comfortable. And I could film with an even better feeling because of that.”

“The personality and roots of the character were taken from the webtoon, but there were a lot of things that like the way her speaking or actions that weren’t manufactured that were expressed as myself. Doing that, I ended up ad-libbing a lot, and bonding more [with the role]. It feels like I won’t be able to meet this kind of character again.”

Park also shared the appreciation for the pre-production format, and particularly its ability to allow for freedom and higher quality of the finished product: “I did worry that it would be impossible to monitor the netizen reactions as we filmed and correct things as we went, but thankfully, the reaction was pretty good from the first episode.”

As for Eun-taek, “He’s the ideal man. He’s kind, he’s a hoobae but as comfortable as a friend, and he likes me tons.” Asked why Bora wouldn’t just date him then, Park said, “Bora seems tough on the outside, but she’s soft-hearted and has a lot of affection. So she gets afraid and tentative with relationships. I think Bora has to muster her courage and grab Eun-taek.”

She explained about and trying not to think of him as a romantic possibilty: “It’s the concern that we’re plenty happy and cheerful in this state, why would we try to take it further and possibly break up the relationship? [She’s] deliberately not looking into those feelings.'”

Told that viewers can find Bora frustrating for pushing Eun-taek away, she replied, “I get frustrated too. [Laughs] On the dating front, Bora and I are different. For me, rather than worrying about what might happen later, I’m faithful to how I feel in the present. Bora doesn’t dislike Eun-taek, I think she’s just worrying too much about the future of their relationship.”

And last (for now) but not least, we have Kim Hee-chan, who was adorably devoted young Lee Sang-yoon in Twenty Again, as well as Gong Hyo-jin’s endearing and bratty kid brother in The Producers, and is now Seol’s endearing and bratty kid brother Joon in Cheese in the Trap.

He said, “I was so happy that I got to be in Cheese in the Trap. Watching PD Lee Yoon-jung’s last project, I thought I’d like to work with her. I was also glad to have gotten to work with actors my age. …It was fun because the actors were all around the same age, and everyone looked after me well, from Joo-hyuk, Kang-joon, Go-eun noona, and Hae-jin sunbae. Everyone did a good job, and I’m happy that I gained a lot of colleagues.”

However, he hadn’t gone into Cheese intending to go for Joon, and in fact auditioned for other characters: “I had three auditions, but didn’t read for Joon’s dialogue once. They gave me Oh Young-gon’s or Baek In-ho’s script so I didn’t know I’d get Joon. …I wanted to act in Young-gon’s role. He has impact and a lot of interesting elements. And strangely, I became closest with Yoon-ho hyung [who plays Young-gon].”

Does he feel the popularity of the drama in real life? Maybe not yet: “I still ride the bus and there aren’t that many people who recognize me.”

Via TV Daily, Ten Asia , Herald Corp, Osen, Segye, Ten Asia, My Daily

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This is awesome!!!! *happy little girl* Anyone know where I can find the interviews?

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You can click on the links on the bottom of this post. Javabeans had it posted.

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Thanks! but like bips99 said, it's all in Korean...
Really grateful for DB team!!!! :D

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I tried to go with google translate but it was just a jumble of words. So it wouldn't be much help unless you know korean.

Thank you team DB for translating the quotes for the rest of us :)

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I love the colors of Park Hae-jin's Hanbok in the top picture.

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Thanks for this, javabeans!

OMG She was Jenny in that movie?! WOWWWW I never would have thought of it. Oh wow.

So Kang Joon didn't read the manhwa before playing In-ho. That's why people were saying he was quite diffrent to manhwa In-ho. I enjoy his interpretation of the character and he's doing really well.

Now, I'm quite intrigued with this director. Can anyone tell me what other dramas/movies she has worked on before?

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earthna - the director is the same as much beloved (by me, I'm sure others too) Coffee Prince

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Oh wow, she did Coffee Prince?! Awesome.

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I think she also did Coffee Prince.

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Coffee Prince and Heart to Heart. I enjoyed the latter a lot more but the former is more popular and what she's known for.

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Taerung National Village is her best work imo. She also worked under for Kwon Seok-jang for Golden Time, though it was definitely his style and his vision.

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? thank you sooooo much jb!! Didn't realize i was into deep with Cheese until i read this and felt the hunger (hur). I'm glad they're having fun with their characters too! I lurve the webtoon and really happy with the drama. Oh and i really wish Kim Go Eun does an interview, she was totally different in Coin Locker Girl.
Thanks again JB! Great job to the cast!!
Happy Lunar New Year indeed! ?

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I was so disappointed for cheese not airing.. I ended up reading all the previous post of it from casting time... god bless all those souls who fought against suzy's casting... (I have nothing against her as a person but lots with acting category...) seriously kim go eun is heart of the show... (park hae jin and their sizzling chemistry too).. ah! I miss cheese...

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100% agree with your name ☺. This week without Cheese is so hard T_T

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Oh thank you!! Such a treat for us fans who got our Cheese taken away this week.

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?????????? Feeling grateful, thanks JB.

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Thank you, thank you! Glad that there was something Cheese-related that I could temper my appetite with while I wait for next week. Thank you, JB!

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Ahhhhhh ........ at least some sort of a cheese fix to tide over this week. ... I wish they had interviews of Seol and Eun-taek too.

" I’d thought of Yoo Jung [before] as calculating and cold and those kinds of things. But then I thought of him from entirely the opposite way and saw him as an innocent person. Like the kind of child who would be playing fine, but if he gets hit, he thinks he has to hit back too."

THIS. This is why most of us on team Jung. They have done amazzzzzing work interpreting the webtoon.

Monday come soon!

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Do you think so? I thought we were pretty evenly split or, if anything, more on Team Inho (then there are all the Jung defenders who aren't shipping Jung/Seol either.) However, Jung's side ends up talking more, I think. Not surprising, I guess, with such a central and polarizing character.

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Don't forget Team Inho& Piano!

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Lol. True. Thats a team with lots of support. ^_^

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Is anyone not aboard this ship?!

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Inha? :p

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LMAO, you got me. I give her a pass tbh, even though I probably shouldn't lol.

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Go ship, go!

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Team Jung & JungSeol all the way!!!

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Team Jung all the way!!

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Not even gonna lie, the more I've read ridiculous comments writing off Jung and the flood of comments diagnosing/labeling him, the more I've supported him lol.

But I'd say the majority of the Korean audience prefers Jung while the majority of the international audience prefers In Ho.

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Same.
And funny thing is, neither you or I are necessarily Seol/Jung endgame. I just hate having someone written off as evil with so little information.

Re: 2nd paragraph, as a Korean-American, I could totally see that happening.

Btw, idk if anyone else is reading the attached articles but I think the first says PHJ read the webtoon 3x to get a feel for Yoo Jung's character? Anyone? My Korean is not that good. Reading slooooowly. (Thank the drama gods for jb translations. ?)

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How does one come to know the tastes of korean vs international audience? For a whole show i can make out by ratings vs popularity on streaming website (eg moorim, healer) ... But how are you gauging it for a single character ? ... Is there a website/ blog that you are referring to.... Can you share it pls. .... I'd be very interested in it .. i'm lapping all things cheese these days!

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I think one website did a poll and Jung beat out In Ho by a slight percentage (it was a Korean website too, if I'm recalling correctly), but my main reasoning is it seems most webtoon readers like Jung more for Seol, if only bc of the lack of love triangle in it.

I wish I could remember the website that did the poll! Plus, if you venture onto other sites like tumblr, In Ho is preferred by a landslide from what I came across lol.

@Petra I'm pulling for Jung but I just want my bb Seol happy (but I won't lie again, I don't like In Ho as a love interest while I adore him as a character. I just don't talk about him unless a comment is pointing out his flaws which is sadly rare). If PHJ read the webtoon that many times, I feel like SKJ could have read it ONCE, just to get a feel of the source material. Seeing webtoon In Ho in full-force might have forced the comparisons of the guys to be more...fair?

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I said the same thing - SKJ should have read the webtoon to get a feel of the character. SKJ is doing great in this role but i have not liked him in his previous roles

so i do wonder if he has the acting chops to keep the audience rooting for a more flawed character. He is nailing the current sweet version of inho. Not sure if he would have been able to pull off the webtoon inho

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Ya tumblr is full of inho GIFs !! .... But i do ship inho with his piano :) .... more of bora and eun tek would help too

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I was pretty shocked by that whole part of his statement actually. Haha.

He didn't read the source material? Then he says he asked how he would react to situations? O.o

Isn't he supposed to ask how the character would react? Whether it be the Inho character as a whole or just the drama one?

Perhaps I'm missing something.

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Agree with you guys on the opinion that SKJ should have at least checked the source material. I mean they are doing an adaptation of a webtoon after all. But maybe that was his strategy? To make it fresh? Maybe he discussed this with the writer and the PD and they all concluded that it would be best. Kudos to PHJ. He is nailing Jung from the webtoon. Saw in soompi that they put webtoon scenes beside drama scenes and they are really alike, expressions and all! Just a few more days before monday! Haha!

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@ Jeanie

That is what I concluded must have happened too. At least I can't imagine he could do that without director, writer signing off on it.

But it's still puzzling as the drama is supposed to be an interpretation/adaptation of the source, not an exercise in imagination.

Tbh, I'm really disappointed by that. It's like in writing, you can break the rules but you better know the rules backwards, forwards and sideways first.

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It really makes me wonder if they mean to make the audience prefer Inho to that extent. In which case Im wondering what the whole journey was for.
But I guess that's personal preference, the easy route has always spelled disaster for me. So we are back to personal experience affecting our interpretations, haha.

I love CITT. (But the ending better be a good story...story is King ?☺️...or we'll see how quickly love can turn to hate and vice versa :p)

*jumping to conclusions*
*grouchy with no Cheese....urrr ? at TVN,lol*

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Yeah...I'm wary of this now. Like, this is an adaptation. You need to get in your character's mindset, not your own? I think bips99 might be right by assuming he maybe could act better using his own interpretation? But I'm still disappointed a bit. If the actors of freaking Twilight read the source material, I think any actor can and should lol.

They might've won over many by toning down In Ho, but he's legit been one of my least fav second leads (as far as being a contender for the girl's heart). In Ho and Jung won't even be on speaking terms if Seol ends up with the former, and I'd feel like so much of the show was wasted...

At this point let Seol find another guy or just be alone and happy and In Ho and Jung go to counseling together. They both need it.

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@Petra - True, at least you should know the source material first before taking liberties and giving your own interpretation (or interpretation guided by of the writer/PD).

@KK - lol at the Twilight reference. I want some Jung-In Ho bromance! Haha!

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Agree with all of you - even to interpret you need to know the story to begin with.

And you can see the difference reading the source material makes. PHJ has got his character's frame of mind perfectly. And that ultimately reflects in his work

He sums it up so well. While many dismiss jung as psychopath, unable to feel emotions; his problem is the exact opposite - he feels too much. Like PHJ says jung has a need to react to any slight like a child. He just can't let things slide.

... Inho on the other hand is simply cute. Its only when his piano comes in that you get some depth.

And yes to bromance! The 2 actors have chemistry - i love their bickering and taking shots at each other.

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The bromance!!! Confession: I feel more chemistry between SKJ and PHJ when they're bickering and glaring than SKJ and KGE lol. I want more flashbacks and I'm ready to see why both feel betrayed.

@bips99 I agree so much. Every time I feel In Ho's going to be fleshed out properly...*sigh* And I love him and his piano, but, yeah...sometimes his depth seems to rely solely on that. But like some have said, maybe drama In Ho needed to be mellowed out for particular reasons (he maybe wouldn't have translated as well onscreen as they wanted him to). People already complained about In Ha until the last episode or so...

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About the necessity of reading the source material: I feel the need to jump in here and say...not necessarily. Which is funny, because usually I'd be right on your side agreeing that yes, READ THE SOURCE MATERIAL...but. CITT as a drama has to work as a drama. In any other original drama, the script is all you have, so I don't really see SKJ as sinning if he's only using the script to interpret his character.

Also, an adaptation is always going to have to, well, adapt the source material, and at this point, if you blame SKJ for faulty characterisation, then it doesn't make sense not to blame the director, first for casting the "wrong" actor, and second, for not having him portray Inho differently. At this point, you can only assume that this is the portrayal the director wants.

I myself haven't read the webtoon, but that really just reinforces my point: there has to be enough in the script for the actor to mine, and the drama-as-a-drama has to have enough substance to be taken independently from its source material. There isn't a 100% crossover between readers and viewers, nor can it be assumed.

After that, there's always going to be a wide vein of disagreement that is just natural, because everyone will have an opinion. Purist will fight purist, pens will be drawn and ink spilt, fandoms will rise and fall, and rise again--

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about the webtoon, as a webtoon fan, I really wish he would have read the source material. I mean I enjoy his take on Inho well enough but man does he feel like a totally different character. Here he is playing him too lost puppy for my liking. While in the webtoon I felt he was a lost puppy with more layers that wasn't always so cute and nice and made you look deeper at him like we tend to do here with Jung. Honestly Inho feels like the same character he played in Cunning Single Ladies (though I will admit his acting has improved and he brings nice cute touches to Inho).

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hella late but, if you read the netzien comments left on articles and such about CiTT most of it/large majority of it is pro Jung and Jung/Seol. There was even an article here about the show having many ahjumma fans and well if you read the comments on the original article vast majority of those viewers and the younger Korean sect were pro Jung and Jung Seol. Also that one poll (which was more youth viewers than their ahjumma viewers sending in votes) Jug/Jung&Seol won.

If you venture into international places like tumblr or dramafever comments, a large majority of that audience is pro Inho and Inho/Seol. I myself am an international fan but I am pro Jung and team Seol's happiness which is with Jung so Jung/Seol all the way for me here and especially in the webtoon (been reading the webtoon since it came out 6years ago and digging the drama adaption of it).

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Agree,it have to be HAPPY ENDING# Jung and Seol,I am international audience too

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Thanks JB for posting! Disappointed that we don't get to see a Kim Go-eun interview for now, hope she does one soon! She brings so much life to Seol and the complexities her character demands from her. I'm still amazed that a pre-produced Kdrama does so well, but even more happy that PD Lee Yoon-jung was able to get her hands on this project and work her magic!

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Nice article.

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Thanks JB! You've picked really good bits of the interviews for us. Thanks for 'translating' them.

What a great eye-opener... I only found Jung scary and was wondering if I should think him naive in his reactions... they seemed so deliberate and vengeful. However, if the side of him that deals with injustice (towards himself?) is not mature, I guess it can be seen as 'innocent'... 'childish'? but something he's going to grow past to some extent, I hope.

The bit that struck me was '... But cable is the opposite. Every scene has to have suspense. If you give viewers a moment to look at the clock, they can change the channel right away. For me, the standard for an entertaining drama is how many times I looked at the clock while watching it.”'

So cable's attitude is that they cannot afford to be complacent... keep the viewers on the edge of their seats and panting for more! No wonder I feel exhausted after watching TVN!!! :D

It's good to know that the actor Park Hae Jin, also finds Jung troubling and hard to understand. Such an interesting thing to say about a character one is portraying. However, at times, we are a mystery to ourselves, therefore what more when playing the role of someone else!

Love all the interviews!

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Thank you, javabeans! I wish Kim Go Eun had also done an interview but it's nice to have this.

“While acting together, I said to Kim Go-eun, ‘If I were a woman, I’d dislike me.’ [Laughs] She thought the same as me.”

Yeah same here.

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I love this interview! I just love PHJ more and more, after Bad Guys. I can't believe he was part of East of Eden which I hate the most lol (I hate the drama, i dont know why...) ha ha ha

And totally agree on what PHJ said about Kim Go Eun. Or i think i will just call her Hong Seol after this hihi ;) The first time I watched this girl was Coin Locker Girl and she was awesome ;)
You guys while waiting for cheeseeeeee next week, go watch her movies, if you are yet to do so. She is what I call as born to be an actress.

Seo Kang Joon indeed improved a lot this time. I disliked his acting in Hwajung but this time, I cannot him him. Maybe he has improved and with good direction, he delivers.

As for Park min Ji and a new cutie pie, Kim Hee-chan,.. I will set my eyes of these two. Kim Hee Chan was adorable as young Lee Sang Yoon in twenty again,and also adorable as Seol's dongsaeng here. :D

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THANKS! so much for this!!!! :))

It does help to ease the pain (sob) of the last two days. (Which were actually rather horrid days for me though the lack of CITT alone wasn't it, of course. But days I definitely needed to de-stress with some craziness apart from real life.)

So PHJ said he starts looking heavier by ep 12? I wonder if that means he looks even more buff? I don't mean in a pervy way but I noticed sometimes when he moves in sweaters, shirts you see the musculature beneath. I noticed he was slimmer in Bad Guys...fit well for that role.

Heh. I'm looking forward to episode 12 even more now :p

And I'm also glad some aspects of Jung's character bothered him. Id wonder if he thought he was the ideal man. O.o Jung being an awesome character notwithstanding (and PHJ is nailing it).

Surprised SKJ didn't read the webtoon ahead of time. I guess they didn't ask him to so that's okay, right? It's just that I see a lot of criticisms about how Inho is toned down from the webtoon, in a way that Jung is not, and I wonder if he would do it differently. Of course, the drama wanted to do that anyway, it seems. Id still prefer it if I felt the same amount of tension with Inho's character. As if I feared for when he would fly off the handle and explode. (But not blaming the actor.)

Finally, it's very hard for me to envision KHC as Young-on. I get that they're actors who can well, ACT but so used to him being the cute (but spoiled/somewhat bratty) lil bro here. I'm having trouble seeing him as a scary stalker instead of a cute puppy following someone. Idk, maybe that should be his next role, haha, to surprise us all.

And that last pic is so cute, I'm resisting the urge to use it as my phone's Wallpaper *cue creepy music* (kidding).

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Re: looking forward to ep 12 - well if he's put on some weight I hope he gets a brooding shower scene to show it off! ...or some ahem sexytimes if y'know whatcha mean.

On SKJ not reading the webtoon, I suppose that meant he went into the scenes with a fresh perspective and lent some dynamism to the interactions between the characters. I dunno, I'm kinda OK with Inho as he is in the drama, and I'm OK with Jung (and Seol and Joon and so on so forth), so I agree w PHJ that the casting is really perfect and I have no quibbles about whether or not people read the source material...doesn't seem to affect my love for the drama anyhow HAHA

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True, true. If Inho was as intense as I read him in the webtoon, we'd never get a break from the intense pacing.

Glad you responded to the muscles thing, haha. I was like, oh great, I guess I'm the only one. Now I'm the perv ?. I'm just saying, it's good for his uh...roles. Ahem. ?

I think the Korean said he gained 13 kg.

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I just have to say something...ive been a constant lurker in this site and lurking like crazy for cheese in the trap. But I was so happy about your ummmm....muscle comment. You all have so many poignant opinions about the drama and all I can come up with is PHJ sure is buff. And I'm just happy that I am not alone in my not so innocent observervation.

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I'll take a shirtless scene...any shirtless scene...I'm not picky. Jung could be ripping off his shirt in a temper tantrum complete with crying and yelling and I'd still be feeling like my eyes were blessed. /shallow and a perv and don't care haha

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LOL... no no no. I will take the classic shower scene where the actor is "deep in thought" and the camera just pans over his abs as the soap suds are running down it. mwahahaha.... *drool*

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A lovely read, thank you!

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Thanks JB, i really, really need my cheesy fix...

*brb rewatching episode 1-10
T_T

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Wahhh thank you sooo much for this!!! I didn't know how else to satisfy my Cheese in the Trap craving with the break but his made my day :D
I love this show <3
I love this cast <3
They're so perfect!

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Love what PHJ said about his character. Even though I'm wanting Seol to end up with Jung (I'm ultimately Team Seol is Happy bc this girl has become one of my favorite heroines) and him be a better version of himself, I'd definitely have trouble liking a guy as complex and layered as Jung IRL. Then again, I would dislike a guy like In Ho upon first meeting, so...I'll just take a normal dude who loves his food and his girl like Eun Taek lol.

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I second Eun Taek as the most normal of the lot and also probably the only one I'd hang out IRL (and like). The rest of the folks in the drama........? Yeah................lol.

Sigh, I missed Cheese so desperately this week that I rewatched a bunch of episodes, rewound a bunch of scenes (no lying, all the scenes with sizzling chemistry of course), re-read all the recaps...and I was like WHY IS MONDAY NOT HERE YET WHY!

See what Cheese has done to me!

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I re-watched a few episodes too and now if I ever see any more comments about lack of chemistry btwn Jung and Seol I'm gonna have to hold my hands back from typing a five page essay in response.

I actually was hoping I could get behind the love triangle more with a re-watch...found it even more unnecessary...oops?

I'm so ready for Monday!!! First time I've ever said that lol.

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True, KK, their chemistry is sizzling and very natural. I watched some BTS from tumblr, and it seems their off screen chemistry also dayyum. I enjoyed it so much the interactions between them and the staff. Our lady director also so funny. I especially enjoyed the kissing scene bts, you can see how awkward but so comfortable they are. Too cute!

I am as baffled as you with all of these shippers thing. I do enjoy darker character like House and Sherlock, that's why I enjoy Jung's other side so much, but second lead shipping would be valid if there's a some kind of hint of relationship between the sl and the female lead, which in this drama, there is absolute zero. So, what's really to ship?

I also do not share the sentiment how swoon worthy In Ho is, if Jung is child-like, then name calling (no, it is not cute) is only cute when you are 5 and you like the a girl. Beyond 5 I do not find the quality trait endearing, appalling yes, but def not endearing.

The love triangle thing is really not necessary, CITT is superb the way it is.

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OMG a CiTT banner (PHJ and KGE) on DB!! Kyaaaa lucky me who got it when I refresh this page!
Thanks JB and DB!

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Thank you so much, my hunger for this drama is real. I’m missing it so much. I love, love Park Hae-Jin in this, so much more than I did in Bad Guys.
I really like Kim Go Eun too; her natural look highlights her great acting skills. I’ve never really like Seo Kang Joon that much because I didn’t like his acting before, but he has definitely improved, I’m enjoying his performance.
I like that Park Min-Ji and Nam Joo-Hyuk improv a lot, they seem so natural and it’s so cute, I always love watching their parts.
I wish I had more behind the scenes to watch to keep me until the next episode.

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thank you so much for the CITT fix, really needed it! catching up to signal as i wait for monday! happy lunar year beanies!

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Omg I loved this interview, thank you so much jb for translating it :) I loved the bits about phj description of his character, and I also loved skj's humble take on his own character

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Park's role now seems like a plant that sprouted from the seed of his role in bad guys.

A sociopath/psychopath that is born in a rich family, goes to the best schools and everything. - Sounds a lot like Jung to me.

Spoiler* (Do we have to put this here?)

If Jung has been "sabotaged" to be a serial killer here, he will probably be reacting the same as Bad Guys' Lee Jung Moon, wondering "WHY ARE ALL THESE HUMANS ACTING THIS WAY?"

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I saw a clip on yt of an interview with Park Hae-jin asking who he thinks is the most attractive among the actresses, and he named Kim Go-eun. That was back in 2014 for jtbc, I think. :)

I hope Kim Go-eun does an interview sometime soon regarding Seol. Because I luff her and her character.

Since CITT did not air this week, I've been rewatching his time as a member of Family Outing and cried a lot of joyful tears when Song Ji-hyo guested, and she, Dae-sung and Hae-jin got perms before making breakfast. Hilarious. Yoo-jung got ajuhmma curls! LOL.

Thanks for the post, javabeans. Looking forward to Part.2.

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Hur. This I have to see ?

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I really want a Kim Go-eun interview, she tends to make for an interesting read and I'd love to have her take on all of it.

And I've seen that clip where Park Hae-jin named her as his ideal type, it's definitely from mid-2014, ages before he was even cast as Jung.

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I remember that episode! Truly hilarious XD Ah, now I feel like going back and finishing all the FO episodes I can find on yt...

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Thank you for making the wait easier
So excited to see this

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Thanks so much for these interview highlights, JB!! I only read a snippet of Bora's somewhere, so it's awesome to read up on everyone's thoughts. =) I think this is one drama done amazingly well as an adaptation from source material. Casting is definite spot on and I love the fact that it's pre-produced without rushing the plot or sacrificing important elements. Can't wait for the part 2 interviews. ^^

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This interview is a pleasant surprise to wake up to!

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OMG, thank YOU so much for translating this! It's such a fun interview to read.

Honestly, I don't see Park Hae Jin as a 33-year old. Even though he's born in the same year as Hyun Bin, he just feels younger than HB. He has this youthful feel to him. Also, he way he plays Yoo Jung just makes the viewers forget about his age. Even his high school scene was believable! He was adorable in that scene!

Looks like the actors/actresses really appreciate the pre-production filming method. I wish more dramas would go about this way. It's safer and the PD is able to produce better quality work this way. Also, I actually like the fact that the drama's direction won't sway based on what the viewers are complaining about (i.e. Baek In Ha's exaggerated way of speaking --- I actually enjoy her comedic scenes).

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yeah, Park Hae-jin does come off as younger, like my head knows he's 32 but in the actual drama, it doesn't matter. And of course, his chemistry with Kim Go-eun is off the charts.

Count me as another one who's enjoying crazy In-ha. Lee Sung-kyung's eye-widening is a bit much but I like that she goes all in and plays it for comedic effect, she actually did commit to the crazy in a really full-on way.

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Yeah, I really don't see what the big deal is about age. I see age pointed out in this drama and others. But ppl age differently. I'm routinely taken for 15 years younger and I'm like, "good ole Asian genes." And these are celebrities so they have the money and the incentive to look young. (Whereas I really don't care much. Though not drinking [except apple cider] or smoking helps.)

I think even in American cinema and shows, actors play roles that are younger than their actual age. I remember in 90210, there was a 34 yr old playing a high schooler, for example.

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Yeah, and Charisma Carpenter was 26 in the first season of Buffy. I'd actually say it's more common for older actors to play younger people in America, than the other way around lol.

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Lol, I have no problem with PHJ playing a college student considering that we have 30+ actors playing 17 year olds on the regular here in the states.

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The netizen reaction to Kim Go-eun being cast as Seol was just strange, especially after I'd seen three of her movies and it was apparent she had a pretty good baseline level of acting skill.

When she was first cast, the reactions were positive, but people turned on her after that for, of all things, her looks - I'm glad she proved herself and silenced the nitpickers once and for all, and I respect Park Hae-jin for speaking up for her here.

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I generally try to not use the term "girl crush" but...KGE in this role has been the ultimate girl crush for me. Everything from the styling to her awkwardness and smiles, I love her Seol. I hope she's in more dramas in the future!

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Have you seen her movies? She's amaaaaazzzzing in all of them. I seriously was impressed by her acting, especially in Coin Locker Girl (which...uh....is actually really gritty and I recommend watching it with bright lights and lots of tissues by your side).

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My head knows the poor crazy girl in Monster is the same girl as Eun-gyo and Seol, and Coin Locker Girl's Il-young, but she's so different in them that my brain is still going 'DOES NOT COMPUTE'.

if this is the kind of young talent that breaks out of Chungmuro, I have to say, movie actresses are really on a different level - her, Park So-dam, Go Ah-sung, Park Bo-young, Chun Woo-hee.... they'd make a killer next-gen if they did dramas more often.

(unfortunately they only seem to do tv once in a blue moon - Go Ah-sung has done one drama in the last six years, Park Bo-young did one in seven years, Chun Woo-hee hasn't done a drama since the sitcom Vampire Idol in 2011, Kim Go-eun did her first drama ever here and had to be coaxed into it....only Park So-dam appears to be doing more than one drama)

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Yessss. I watched A Muse and Coin Locker Girl recently and my love for her grew. I need to see her other films!

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yes yes yes,,,I love kim go eun's acting so much,,,She is very talented,,really like to hear more about her,,interviews and next drama :)

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Thanks db! It made my day already and my yearning for cheese was quenched.

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Thanks so much for translating the interviews! Enjoyed reading it. This (and watching the preview another 371947283 times) somewhat made up for the lack of Cheese this week.

Disappointed Kim Go-eun wasn't there. I was actually surprised when PHJ said she was met with much skepticism. From what I recall, I thought most people were satisfied with her acting (in films) and looks (after the photos of the first script reading came out). Either way, she sure proved everyone wrong. She's lovely and endearing as Seol. (:

I assumed everyone read the webtoon before acting, but I guess SKJ didn't. Kind of expected it though since, of all the characters, In-ho differed from the original the most in my opinion. Though after watching several episodes, I'm glad he didn't read the webtoon. He's been doing a superb job of portraying In-ho in his own way. All those interactions with Seol (and how he's so adorably worried about her) are so great.

Can't wait for Part 2! :D

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I honestly think that he could have benefited from reading the webtoon. the webtoon one was more layered. I started reading the webtoon this week and inho is short tempered, bratty and sort of asking seol for money all the time but SKJ's interpretation of all that is essentially just "cute" ... Of course it is all adorable but i think it would have made for a richer character graph if he had infused a bit of greyness.

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Does anyone know what are some dramas by PD Lee Yoon-Jung? She sounds like an awesome director!

YES to more pre-produced dramas! We don't need time constraints to force out more shitty dramas that are forgettable.

With the way TVN is going, they could slap their logo on any dramas and I will watch it everyday of the week!

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you should check this page

http://wiki.d-addicts.com/Lee_Yoon_Jung

yep, she is an awesome PD, i adore Coffee Prince and CITT

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I do not like PJH's hair style. It looks like a bowl on his head. It also seems like an omen somehow.

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??? O.o An omen of what do you think?

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Park Jae Hin wouldn't shine as much as he did without his very charming and talented co-star Kim Go Eun. She is such a breath of fresh air and it is such as a delight to see her naturalistic way of acting. I hope she will also do the interview rounds soon. What makes her different among the korean actresses is she doesn't seem to overly concerned about her appearance as a celebrity. She goes for roles that are challenging and beyond the norm. I'm glad she took the role of Seol, and she owned it and made it work. She proved all her critics wrong. :) Would love to hear from her soon!

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Just checked the link. It is basically cut and paste from DB and no credit given, unless I missed something.

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Thank JB!. You are right it doesn't ease the pain or frustration but it is so much better than nothing. The cast really did a good job and one can not help but fall in love with them! I really wish that KGE had come too but something is better than nothing right;)

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Thanks so much for this, JB! We all needed this! Such an interesting read. Ughh, can't wait for monday!

Also, is anyone here familiar with Tbinnie from tumblr, the one who does cheese in the trap summaries? For some reason, her tumblr is gone? Last I read was her summary of season 4, chapter 23 :(

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What? Really? Dang, I was checking my interpretation with hers.

Maybe she became too busy or the show, webtoon REALLY want the ending kept veiled? O.o

But webtoon is not done either so not sure....
Ah well, guess no point in speculating. :/
I thought she was doing a good job. And I'm sure Naver got more hits for the raws of Season 4 because of it.

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Oh, it's entirely gone. Did it move?

She was doing summaries for a bunch of other webtoons as well.

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Yea, gone. Don't know what happened. Can't find it anywhere. I tried checking out summaries that she's done for other webtoons and you can't access those as well :(

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I checked it too, it sometimes said deactivated. I was going to ask something, but it's no longer there. I hope she comes back

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Oh this is so darling! Thanks JB for posting this.

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Minsoo actually looks cute in that picture. I think KGE and PHJ did well in portraying their webtoon characters. You can't get it 100% accurate but both of them stayed close to who the characters are and that's why I love them both! That's what makes them both great actors. I love all the drama CITT actors but most especially these two leads. Monday...please come fast?

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I think the actress who played Minsoo did a really good job. Completely believable in that role. I was freaked out.

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Maybe I'm weird in thinking it, but Yoo Jung's character somewhat reminds me of Lee Min. Of course, minus the entire killing thing... At least he's got his morals straight in that aspect. O.o

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No, you're not weird. There was a thread buried somewhere after an episode with ppl comparing/contrasting them.

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Park Hae Jin fits the role perfectly. After checking the webtoon i thought the writer had drawn the character with PHJ in mind.

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And I am a girl and i like Yu Jong!

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Oh thank you so much for translating this. It's very interesting to see what the actors think of the characters they are playing.

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I think KGE is awesome as Seol......I read webtoon too

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Kim go eun out shines all others including PHJ in acting in this drama.

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